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Electronic Design 2006 Reader Profile Survey Results

Oct. 12, 2006
A total of 2597 readers responded to Electronic Design's Reader Profile Survey. A detailed breakdown of the following categories is laid out in this feature: About You Professionally
Engineering Experience
Employment Outlook

Total number of respondents: 2597.

Section A: About You Professionally

Questions in this section included:

  • A1. What is your principal job function?
  • A2. What is your job title?
  • A3. Is this the same job title you held at this time last year?
  • A4. If you changed job titles within the past year, what was the primary reason for change?
  • A5. Which of the following best describes your current employment status?
  • A6. How many hours during the typical workweek do you spend: At your office; Working at home; Working at other locations; On call?
  • A7. Which of the following best describes your current design project?
  • A8. Which of the following markets are the products your company designs sold into?
  • A9. Some industry data suggest that there is a growing shortage of analog engineers. Does your organization have difficulty finding qualified analog engineers?
  • A10. If yes, what are some of the ways your organization is addressing the shortage?
  • A11. In your opinion, what are some of the reasons why analog engineers might be getting harder to find?
  • A12. How many members, including yourself, comprise your current design team: At your location; At other locations within the US; At other locations outside the US?

The responses broke down as follows:

A1. What is your principal job function? (select one) Responses: 2398 Design & development engineering
68.9%1652Engineering management
12.3%296Executive/operating management
6.8%162Other
12.0%288 A2. What is your job title? Responses: 2385 President/owner/CXO/other executive management
9.8%233Vice president/VP of engineering
2.2%53Department head/section head
3.6%86Technical director/director of engineering/R&D/engineering manager
5.3%126Group leader/project team leader/project manager
6.5%155Chief engineer/senior engineer/lead engineer/principal engineer
14.0%335Applications/systems engineering manager
1.6%37Hardware/software engineering manager
2.1%50Manufacturing/production manager
0.6%15QC/evaluation/test manager
0.7%17Design engineer/project engineer/R&D engineer
20.1%479Systems engineer/applications engineer
4.9%117Hardware engineer/software engineer
9.4%224Manufacturing/production engineer
1.3%30Test engineer
3.2%77Consulting engineer/scientist
3.5%83MTS
0.5%12Other
10.7%256 A3. Is this the same job title you held at this time last year? Responses: 2415 Yes
86.8%2096No
13.2%319 A4. If you changed job titles within the past year, what was the primary reason for change? Responses: 559 Promotion with same employer based upon merit/training
36.3%203Reassignment because of layoffs or restructuring with same employer
10.4%58Laid off or fired from previous company
6.8%38Left previous company to pursue other opportunities
23.8%133Other
22.7%127 A5. Which of the following best describes your current employment status? Responses: 2412 Full time
86.7%2091Part time
2.6%62Freelance/self employed
8.0%193Contract worker
1.7%40Other
1.1%26 A6. How many hours during the typical workweek do you spend:

At your office?
Mean: 42.19 Responses: 2383 More than 60 hours
2.6%6156-60 hours
5.1%12151-55 hours
7.5%17846-50 hours
19.8%47241-45 hours
35.0%93436-40 hours
15.7%37431-35 hours
3.4%8026-30 hours
2.3%5521-25 hours
1.5%3516-20 hours
1.8%4215 or fewer hours
5.5%131 Working at home? Mean: 8.06 Responses: 2361 More than 60 hours
0.7%1756-60 hours
0.7%1651-55 hours
0.3%746-50 hours
1.2%2841-45 hours
1.1%2636-40 hours
1.2%2831-35 hours
0.8%2026-30 hours
1.7%4121-25 hours
2.0%4716-20 hours
6.4%15111-15 hours
5.8%1376-10 hours
17.3%4091-5 hours
35.8%845None
24.9%589 Working at other locations? Mean: 2.25 Responses: 2201 More than 20 hours
2.5%5416-20 hours
2.4%5211-15 hours
1.6%366-10 hours
7.1%1561-5 hours
18.5%408None
67.9%1495 On call? Mean: 1.52 Responses: 2155 More than 10 hours
8.4%1806-10 hours
2.5%541-5 hours
16.2%350None
72.9%1571 A7. Which of the following best describes your current design project? (select one) Responses: 2399 Computer product design (supercomputers, mainframes, workstations, servers, PCs, notebooks/laptops, peripherals, boards, etc.)
4.1%98Communications systems and equipment (local-area/wide-area networking products, wireless, cellular, RF and microwave, Bluetooth, etc.)
12.1%291Industrial controls systems and equipment (including robotics)
13.5%324Test and measurement equipment
8.0%193Power design
5.7%136Safety/security
1.5%36Research & development
8.6%206Software design/development/programming
4.9%117Medical electronics products
5.9%141Consumer electronics products
5.5%131Automotive electronics products
4.0%95Avionics, marine, or space
4.7%112Military electronics products
6.5%155Components and subassemblies
1.8%44ICs and semiconductors
5.5%132Other
7.8%188

Total number of respondents: 2597.

Section A: About You Professionally

Questions in this section included:

  • A1. What is your principal job function?
  • A2. What is your job title?
  • A3. Is this the same job title you held at this time last year?
  • A4. If you changed job titles within the past year, what was the primary reason for change?
  • A5. Which of the following best describes your current employment status?
  • A6. How many hours during the typical workweek do you spend: At your office; Working at home; Working at other locations; On call?
  • A7. Which of the following best describes your current design project?
  • A8. Which of the following markets are the products your company designs sold into?
  • A9. Some industry data suggest that there is a growing shortage of analog engineers. Does your organization have difficulty finding qualified analog engineers?
  • A10. If yes, what are some of the ways your organization is addressing the shortage?
  • A11. In your opinion, what are some of the reasons why analog engineers might be getting harder to find?
  • A12. How many members, including yourself, comprise your current design team: At your location; At other locations within the US; At other locations outside the US?

The responses broke down as follows:

A8. Which of the following markets are the products your company designs sold into? (select all that apply) Responses: 2359 North America
83.7%1975South America
35.0%825Europe
57.3%1352Middle East
28.0%660China
31.9%752Japan
35.3%832Korea
27.3%644Other Asia
30.6%723Other
11.1%263 A9. Some industry data suggest that there is a growing shortage of analog engineers. Does your organization have difficulty finding qualified analog engineers? Responses: 2415 Yes
31.2%734No
68.8%1620 A10. If yes, what are some of the ways your organization is addressing the shortage? Responses: 639 A11. In your opinion, what are some of the reasons why analog engineers might be getting harder to find? (select all that apply) Responses: 2284 Analog engineering hasn't been stressed enough at the university level
50.4%1151Working engineers like to concentrate on other, more "glamorous" digital technologies
51.2%1170Analog is a niche discipline that's outside the engineering mainstream
24.5%560Not enough continuing education available to keep up with analog technologies
28.2%643Other
16.4%375 A12. How many members, including yourself, comprise your current design team:

At your location?
Mean: 5.58 Responses: 2379 More than 10
21.4%50810
4.5%1069
1.8%448
4.2%1017
3.8%916
5.9%1415
9.8%2324
10.3%2443
13.2%3142
11.4%2711
13.7%327 At other locations within the US? Mean: 2.63 Responses: 2110 More than 10
16.9%35710
1.5%329
0.3%68
0.9%207
0.5%116
1.2%255
2.0%434
2.1%453
2.8%602
4.7%991
4.5%940
62.5%1318 At other locations outside the US? Mean: 2.51 Responses: 2105 More than 10
16.9%35610
0.8%179
0.2%48
0.7%147
0.5%106
1.2%265
2.2%464
1.8%383
2.8%592
4.4%931
3.8%810
64.7%1361

Total number of respondents: 2597.

A cross-tab analysis is also available online.

Section B: Engineering Experience

Questions in this section included:

  • B1. Approximately how long have you worked in engineering?
  • B2. >During this time as an engineer, how many different companies have you worked for?
  • B3. Do you believe that a career path in engineering and the potential for salary advancement is as promising today as it was five years ago?
  • B4. Why?
  • B5. Approximately how long have you worked at your present company?
  • B6. How many job promotions have you achieved at your current place of employment?
  • B7. Would you recommend engineering as a career path to a young person looking to choose a profession?
  • B8. Why?
  • B9. Do you feel that you are being challenged intellectually with the engineering projects you work on at your present job?
  • B10. What are the professional issues that keep you up at night?
  • B11a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most important, how would you rate the importance of the following factors in terms of their influence on your job satisfaction? The challenges that accompany the design of new products; Researching potential design solutions; The pressures associated with solving design problems; Working in team situations with peers; Working independently of others; The recognition you get from others for the work you do; The compensation you receive for the work you do; Opportunity to design products that can benefit society.
  • B11b. Other important factors.
  • B12a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most pressing, how pressing are each of the following problems in your work? Finding the optimal components for my designs; Having to compromise my design approaches; Insufficient funding for my design projects; Insufficient people resources to get the job done; Inability to adequately test product designs; Lack of design management direction; Seniority issues; Management is taking company in wrong direction; Competitive market pressures; Time-to-market pressures; Shrinking product life cycles; Second sourcing for the components specified; Politics at work.
  • B12b. Other most pressing.
  • B13. Which of the following search engines do you use when looking for information related to your work?
  • B14. What forms of personal technology do you use?

The responses broke down as follows:

B1. Approximately how long have you worked in engineering? Mean: 21.34 Responses: 2232 Less than 1 year
1.2%271-4 years
7.5%1685-9 years
10.7%23910-14 years
10.7%23815-19 years
11.1%24820-24 years
16.8%37525-29 years
17.0%38030-34 years
11.2%25035-39 years
6.5%14540 years or more
7.3%162 B2. During this time as an engineer, how many different companies have you worked for? Mean: 3.55 Responses: 2217 8 or more
8.0%1777
4.1%916
6.2%1375
11.2%2484
14.7%3263
18.6%4132
17.4%3851
19.8%440 B3. Do you believe that a career path in engineering and the potential for salary advancement is as promising today as it was five years ago? Responses: 2217 Yes
47.4%1051No
52.6%1166

Total number of respondents: 2597.

Section B: Engineering Experience

Questions in this section included:

  • B1. Approximately how long have you worked in engineering?
  • B2. >During this time as an engineer, how many different companies have you worked for?
  • B3. Do you believe that a career path in engineering and the potential for salary advancement is as promising today as it was five years ago?
  • B4. Why?
  • B5. Approximately how long have you worked at your present company?
  • B6. How many job promotions have you achieved at your current place of employment?
  • B7. Would you recommend engineering as a career path to a young person looking to choose a profession?
  • B8. Why?
  • B9. Do you feel that you are being challenged intellectually with the engineering projects you work on at your present job?
  • B10. What are the professional issues that keep you up at night?
  • B11a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most important, how would you rate the importance of the following factors in terms of their influence on your job satisfaction? The challenges that accompany the design of new products; Researching potential design solutions; The pressures associated with solving design problems; Working in team situations with peers; Working independently of others; The recognition you get from others for the work you do; The compensation you receive for the work you do; Opportunity to design products that can benefit society.
  • B11b. Other important factors.
  • B12a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most pressing, how pressing are each of the following problems in your work? Finding the optimal components for my designs; Having to compromise my design approaches; Insufficient funding for my design projects; Insufficient people resources to get the job done; Inability to adequately test product designs; Lack of design management direction; Seniority issues; Management is taking company in wrong direction; Competitive market pressures; Time-to-market pressures; Shrinking product life cycles; Second sourcing for the components specified; Politics at work.
  • B12b. Other most pressing.
  • B13. Which of the following search engines do you use when looking for information related to your work?
  • B14. What forms of personal technology do you use?

The responses broke down as follows:

B4. Why? Responses: 1823 B5. Approximately how long have you worked at your present company? Mean: 9.94 Responses: 2230 Currently unemployed
1.0%23Less than 1 year
7.9%1771-4 years
28.6%6385-9 years
25.4%56710-14 years
12.4%27715-19 years
8.5%18920-24 years
7.1%15925-29 years
5.2%11730-34 years
1.9%4335-39 years
0.9%1940 years or more
0.9%21 B6. How many job promotions have you achieved at your current place of employment? Mean: 2.07 Responses: 2383 8 or more
2.7%517
0.5%106
1.5%295
4.8%914
6.5%1243
11.0%2092
16.7%3171
56.1%1064 B7. Would you recommend engineering as a career path to a young person looking to choose a profession? Responses: 2213 Yes
79.6%1762No
20.4%451 B8. Why? Responses: 1906 B9. Do you feel that you are being challenged intellectually with the engineering projects you work on at your present job? Responses: 2217 Sufficiently challenged
58.1%1287Somewhat challenged
30.9%685Not challenged enough
11.1%245 B10. What are the professional issues that keep you up at night? (select all that apply) Responses: 2216 Specifying the right products/vendors for my designs
18.3%406Product interoperability issues
14.8%328Price/performance issues
23.3%517Product reliability issues
31.9%706Component availability issues
21.6%478Documenting ROI on engineering expenditures
6.4%142Staying current with new and emerging technologies
38.0%842Looming project deadlines
37.1%822Dealing with reductions in staff
18.0%398Concerns about job security
23.3%517Concerns about financial health of suppliers
3.9%87Concerns about financial health of your company
19.7%437Concerns about the general health of the economy
21.5%476Age discrimination
16.1%356Outsourcing issues
22.5%498Nothing keeps me up at night
19.9%440Other
9.2%204 B11a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most important, how would you rate the importance of the following factors in terms of their influence on your job satisfaction?

The challenges that accompany the design of new products
Mean: 8.20 Responses: 2183 1
0.8%182
0.6%143
1.1%234
1.3%285
3.9%856
5.8%1277
12.5%2728
25.5%5569
21.7%47310
26.9%587 Researching potential design solutions Mean: 8.01 Responses: 2185 1
0.5%102
0.9%193
1.2%274
1.8%395
5.4%1186
6.2%1357
14.2%3108
25.6%5599
23.1%50510
21.2%463 The pressures associated with solving design problems Mean: 6.36 Responses: 2169 1
3.5%762
3.0%643
5.1%1114
7.2%1575
15.8%3426
14.0%3037
16.6%3608
17.6%3819
10.2%22110
7.1%154 Working in team situations with peers Mean: 6.48 Responses: 2174 1
3.0%652
2.7%593
5.3%1164
5.8%1275
15.5%3366
13.0%2827
18.0%3928
18.2%3959
11.0%24010
7.5%162

Total number of respondents: 2597.

Section B: Engineering Experience

Questions in this section included:

  • B1. Approximately how long have you worked in engineering?
  • B2. >During this time as an engineer, how many different companies have you worked for?
  • B3. Do you believe that a career path in engineering and the potential for salary advancement is as promising today as it was five years ago?
  • B4. Why?
  • B5. Approximately how long have you worked at your present company?
  • B6. How many job promotions have you achieved at your current place of employment?
  • B7. Would you recommend engineering as a career path to a young person looking to choose a profession?
  • B8. Why?
  • B9. Do you feel that you are being challenged intellectually with the engineering projects you work on at your present job?
  • B10. What are the professional issues that keep you up at night?
  • B11a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most important, how would you rate the importance of the following factors in terms of their influence on your job satisfaction? The challenges that accompany the design of new products; Researching potential design solutions; The pressures associated with solving design problems; Working in team situations with peers; Working independently of others; The recognition you get from others for the work you do; The compensation you receive for the work you do; Opportunity to design products that can benefit society.
  • B11b. Other important factors.
  • B12a. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being most pressing, how pressing are each of the following problems in your work? Finding the optimal components for my designs; Having to compromise my design approaches; Insufficient funding for my design projects; Insufficient people resources to get the job done; Inability to adequately test product designs; Lack of design management direction; Seniority issues; Management is taking company in wrong direction; Competitive market pressures; Time-to-market pressures; Shrinking product life cycles; Second sourcing for the components specified; Politics at work.
  • B12b. Other most pressing.
  • B13. Which of the following search engines do you use when looking for information related to your work?
  • B14. What forms of personal technology do you use?

The responses broke down as follows:

Working independently of others Mean: 6.42 Responses: 2170 1
3.4%742
2.7%583
5.5%1204
7.0%1525
15.2%3306
13.7%2977
15.7%3408
18.0%3919
11.5%25010
7.3%158 The recognition you get from others for the work you do Mean: 6.94 Responses: 2170 1
2.4%522
2.7%583
4.8%1054
4.7%1035
10.3%2246
12.1%2637
13.0%2828
22.8%4949
15.7%34010
11.5%249 The compensation you receive for the work you do Mean: 7.56 Responses: 2173 1
1.5%322
1.5%333
2.3%494
2.9%645
8.2%1786
9.4%2047
14.6%3188
21.4%4669
19.4%42210
18.7%407 Opportunity to design products that can benefit society Mean: 7.43 Responses: 2172 1
2.6%562
2.7%583